Amish gardens

Amish facts/history, Amish view, Gardening Comments: 14

Today I thought we’d talk about Amish gardens. Raise your hand if you’ve seen one.

I live in Texas, so I’m well acquainted with gardens. My husband’s Uncle Joe had a very large vegetable garden even after he’d gone blind. Uncle Joe was pretty amazing. So I thought I knew what to expect from Amish gardens. Ha! I was wrong.

  1. Amish gardens are big because they try to grow as many veggies as possible to provide for their large families.
  2. Amish gardens are also rather old-fashioned. For instance, look at the picture above with the gas tank in the bottom right-hand corner. I remember my grandma telling me that adding anything rusty to your garden puts iron back in the soil. Have you ever heard that?
  3. Amish gardens are natural, and by that I mean that they’d rather not use costly pesticides. Instead they’ll do things like plant marigolds next to vegetables to ward off insects.
  4. Some Amish gardens are for Englischers. Aren’t the quilt garden pictures above fun? You can find these through Shipshewana, and they’re wonderful to visit.
  5. Occasionally you’ll find a memory garden. The top right picture is one of my favorites. See the wooden marker? What a lovely way for this family to remember a loved one.

Amish are known for their large and beautiful gardens. Of course this is in addition to the crops they grow. What about you? Have you seen any Amish gardens? Do you have a garden? Leave a comment below, and we’ll pull one winner to receive an autographed book from yours truly. Last week’s winner was Kimberly K. (Kimberly, you should have received an email from me today.)

Blessings,

VC

Announcements for this week

  • I have 2 summer specials in my VC Boutique Store and you’ll see some new spring items.  I hope you’ll check it out!
  • The anthology I’m participating in, Summer of Suspense, is now with our editor. You can preorder at BN and Apple and Amazon. Pre-order price is 99c for 16 awesome inspirational romantic suspense novellas. These are all original stories.
  • I’ll be in Shipshewana the week of August 1-4. Mark your calendars in you’re in the area. I’ll post more soon about when and where we’ll be having our book signing. Lots of Amish authors are attending, so this should be a fun event.

What’s Wrong With Shopping

Love Inspired Books, New Release, The Writing Life Comments: 34

There’s nothing wrong with shopping, of course. In fact, if you have the urge, feel free to purchase my new release, A Perfect Amish Match. It’s available in ebook and print. (You can find it at most Walmart stores as well as online retailers).

Some of you might remember that I decided to try a shopping ban for 2019, so I thought I’d update you on how it’s going. So far, so good. Of course I still purchase consumables (food, paper goods, etc.). For me, I found that my biggest tempations were books (surprise), fabric for quilting, yarn for knitting, and clothes! Those are my big 4. Apparently today is day 104, and to tell you the truth I think Continue reading

Bookstores

Christian fiction, Love Inspired Books, Special Sale Price Comments: 27

Anyone else remember bookstores? I’ll bet you do. When I was a child, it was one of my favorite places to go (second to the library), and when I was an adult it was my favorite date place. Yup. Lots of people went on dates at bookstores. Right?

As we all know, there are fewer bookstores every day. I try to tell myself that it’s the same thing as Continue reading

Book Dedication

Amish fiction, Love Inspired Books, New Release Comments: 52

Do you read the book dedication in the front of books?

I do. In fact, I read all of the front matter. It’s a funny thing. If you’re reading on an e-reader, sometimes they start on page 1 of chapter 1. I always want to shout “Slow down, Nelly.” I have to tell the e-reader to go to the cover, and let me read all of the front stuff. Of course if it’s a print book, I can just flip to the front!

For me, it’s a special thing to be able to dedicate a book to someone. After all, it takes a village to Continue reading

Pop-UP Projects

Christian authors, Christian fiction, The Writing Life Comments: 25

As I writer, I keep a pretty detailed calendar. Some of things I need to keep an eye on are:

  • Project due dates
  • Book release dates
  • Book signings and book talks
  • Family vacations (that one is super important)

I try to be realistic about my schedule. After all, we each only get 24 hours a day and some of that really does need to be spent sleeping. I’m a real believer in calendars. “Stick to the calendar,” I say as I stumble toward my desk with a cup of coffee. But one fun thing about being a writer is Continue reading

Amish Quilts, Learning from the Amish Part 3

Amish view, Quilting Comments: 44

It’s been fun to share with you some of the things I’ve learned from the Amish in my many trips to visit their communities. Today I thought I’d share something the Amish are very well known for–their quilting.

  • The Amish don’t purposely put an error in every quilt. They’ve told me there are always errors in quilts. It would be prideful to try and make something perfect.
  • The Amish will quilt in red, but they don’t display red quilts in their homes. There’s nothing wrong with the color red. It’s simply too bold for their tastes.
  • The Amish will use calico or patterned fabrics. There was a time when Amish only quilted with solid fabrics, and some stricter communities may still abide by that rule. Everyone I’ve spoken with says that they are free to use whatever fabric they like.
  • Amish women often quilt with salvage fabrics to lower the cost.
  • Amish women do still hand piece and hand quilt. However, some women also use treadle machines, and others will hand-piece the tops and then have them quilted by a machine. If you buy a quilt in an Amish home, it’s probably hand pieced and hand quilted.

Continue reading

Learning from the Amish, part 2

Amish view Comments: 9

Amish schoolhouse, Middlebury, IN

It has been my pleasure to visit with Amish families in a variety of settings. Needless to say it’s been an eye-opening experience. In many ways their lives are the same as ours. But in other, more fundamental ways their lives are remarkably different. Last week I shared that one of the first things I learned from the Amish was focus. Another thing I’ve learned is to slow down.

This picture is a perfect example of that. It was taken outside an Amish schoolhouse in Continue reading

Another New Year

Author life, Christian living Leave a reply

Happy New Year!

First of all, if you already received this blog–my apologies. I preset it for 2018 instead of 2019. That won’t be the first time I’ll get the year wrong this month … so here goes for take 2. 🙂

Happy new year! I’m one of “those” people who love the thought of a brand new year. I can’t wait to put up my new wall calendar. I start a new journal. I set goals and list projects and make Continue reading